NFC West Notes: 49ers, Rams, Seahawks

     

49ers

Offensive and defensive linemen don’t always get along, which makes sense considering they spend games and practices literally butting heads. So far though 49ers first-round DE Nick Bosa has found a friend in 49ers OT Joe Staley.

“We’ve built a really good relationship,” Bosa said via the Athletic’s Matt Barrows. “He’s a super-nice guy. I don’t usually (act) nice to offensive linemen, but it’s hard not to be nice to him. He’s such a good dude. And he’s been a really good influence on me. It’s good to go against one of the best every day. Any reps you get against him are good reps.”

Staley has been a stalwart for the 49ers since he was taken in the first round in 2007. Bosa was nine years old at the time and has tried to glean as much of Staley’s knowledge facing the league’s top pass rushers as he can to enhance his own game. 

“He’s played so many pass rushers, so many great ones,” Bosa said. “Just the things that he notices that I can improve and things that could make it more difficult for him and vice versa. There are even some things that I’ll say to him. And he’ll be like, ‘Oh. Cool. I never thought of that.’ It’s like back and forth like that.”

Rams

Rams LB Clay Matthews has spent his entire career up to this point with the Packers. However, he says he’s adjusting quickly in his return to southern California where he played in college after signing with the Rams in free agency.

“Obviously there was a certain level of anxiety when you join a team after spending a decade with a different one,” Matthews said via the Athletic’s Lindsay Jones. “But that being said, it’s a level of energy that I haven’t experienced in some time, aside from maybe early on in my career. So I think that’s allowed me to kind of refocus and prove to myself and these coaches why they brought me in here. And to the same point, prove it to the players as well. They expect me to be a veteran and make plays.”

  • Matthews says his primary job will be to rush the passer off the edge in DC Wade Phillips‘ defense. He adds he’ll also be moved around, especially on third down, to rush inside some and will also be used in coverage in the slot and on running backs. 

Seahawks

Back in 2017, Seahawks CB DeShawn Shead suffered a torn ACL in a playoff loss. After returning to Seattle this week, Shead says he feels as healthy as he’s been since then. 

“Man, I feel night and day better,” Shead said via Pro Football Talk. “From even over a year ago. Starting at the beginning of last season my knee was still kind of, I would get kind of sore after practice, or you could see the limitations during the game. It wasn’t until later on in the season last year to where I started to feel normal again. And this offseason I actually got to train instead of rehab. There’s a big difference.”

Shead says he harbors no ill will toward the Seahawks, who released him following the 2017 season. Shead had been scheduled to be a free agent after that year, but his contract didn’t progress after he spent most of the year on the PUP list recovering from that knee injury. The Seahawks released him anyways to give him a shot at free agency and he signed with the Lions on a one-year deal. 

“For them to be able to release me and have an opportunity to go out there and look for a contract was actually a sign of respect so I definitely respected that,” Shead said.

Seahawks WR D.K. Metcalf has received nothing but hype during his short time in Seattle so far. Both HC Pete Carroll and QB Russell Wilson have praised the second-round wide receiver profusely. Metcalf says he’s working to stay grounded amid those high expectations. 

“I always expect highly of myself. . . . I’m always going to shoot for the stars,” Metcalf said via Adam Jude of the Seattle Times. “You know, I was a nobody at one point in my life, so I’ve just got to keep that same mentality.”

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